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  1. No Name is offline

    Featherweight

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    Posted On:
    1/22/2010 7:45pm

    Bullshido Newbie
     Style: Tae Kwon Do and Hapkido

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!

    What's the difference between Shorin Ryu and Shotokan Karate?

    I have been studying Tae Kwon Do for two years and I’m loosing interest in the style. The more I progress the more acrobatic the style becomes, and lets face it I’m not an acrobat. I am 5’10 205 lbs. with very broad shoulders which doesn’t seem to work well with WTF TKD. My contract will soon be up and I’m looking to switch styles. I want a style that has an even amount of hand and foot techniques. I have found two local dojos that look pretty good. One teaches shorin ryu and the other teaches shotokan. I was wondering what the differences between the two styles are. Here are the web sites to the two schools.
    www.oshirodojo.com
    www.jkasv.com/dojo/dojomain.html
  2. Petter is offline

    12th level logic wielder

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    Posted On:
    1/22/2010 8:14pm


     Style: BJJ, judo, rapier

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    What are you looking for? Neither of them says anything whatsoever about contact sparring; I would question whether either school focuses much on imparting real fighting skills. If you want karate, and if you want to fight, you might want to look for Kyokushin, Ashihara, or Enshin (or Daiko Yuko/Kudo, if you’d like to add throws). And I rather cringe at the top graphic on the JKA site, showing one guy aggressively blocking a round kick with his forearm (sounds like a very good way to break your arm); if that’s what they think looks good in advertising…

    If, on the other hand, you don’t care so much about practical fighting skills, you’re probably asking your question on the wrong forum.

    On a different note, one of the instructors affiliated with that JKA dojo is a forum admin over at the Karate Underground, a karate forum where most people are not much given to mysticism and nonsense, and most people agree that hitting bags and contact sparring are better than hitting air and working kata if you want to learn to fight. You might be able to ask him questions directly there.

    You might also want to try just going to the clubs and watching or trying a practice. Every martial arts school and club I’ve heard of lets people try at least one class before committing.
    [ petterhaggholm.net | blog | essays ]
    [ self defence: general thoughts | bjj: “don’t go to the ground”? ]
    “The plural of anecdote is anecdotes, not data.”
  3. patfromlogan is offline
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    Heavyweight

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    Posted On:
    1/22/2010 8:16pm

    supporting member
     Style: Kyokushinkai / Kajukenbo

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Here, get confused:

    Funakoshi, following a traditional model of classifying karate by divided it into two separate traditions, Shorei and Shorin.

    . Gichin Funakoshi suggests that these two styles were developed based on different physical requirements. Shorin-ryu was quick and linear with natural breathing while Shorei-ryu emphasized steady, rooted movements with breathing in synchrony with each movement. Interestingly, this concept of two basic styles also exist in kung-fu with a similar division of characteristics.

    This classification derives from early karate masters which were not associated with their own ryu or martial traditions, but with the towns within which they lived and practiced: Shuri, the capital and political center; Naha, a nearby seaport and trade center, and Tomari a smaller sea port. The early karate practiced in Shuri and to a lesser extent Tomari combined to be known as Shorin-ryu and is associated with the descendants and/or styles of such karate luminaries as Soken Matsumura (Shuri), Kosaku Matsumura (Tomari) and followed by Anko Itosu and Chosin Chibana. The karate of Naha became known as Shorei-ryu and is associated with such karate styles of Goju-ryu and Uechi-Ryu.

    It was the Shorei and Shorin classification of styles (ryu) that Funakoshi followed. He characterized them as follows. Funakoshi said that "Shorei-ryu is suitable for people of large build, whereas Shorin-ryu is suitable for those of smaller frames, less physically powerful or thin, like a willow. For basic posture, Shorei- ryu is good, but it lacks the speed necessary for a real confrontation. Shorin-ryu is quick, but if the practitioner is grabbed, they will be unable to move. Therefore, for those who aspire to practice karate, it is important to pick up the good points of each." (Funakoshi 1922, pp. 5-6)

    This specific classification, i.e. dividing Shorin-ryu and Shorei-ryu by the body types of the practitioners, can be traced as far back as 1914, when Funakoshi penned an article on karate for the Ryukyu Shinpo newspaper, based on the lectures of his main teacher Anko Asato, and writing under his pen name Shoto. While it is true that Funakoshi's other main teacher Anko Itosu, had also stated that there were two "styles" of karate, Shorin-ryu and Shorei-ryu, in his 1908 letter addressed to the Ministry of Education and the Ministry of War, he never characterized them as relating to body types. The famous Okinawan Bubishi also mentions Shorinji-ryu and Shoreiji-ryu (see, for example, Mabuni, 1934), but again, does not state the differences between the two.

    Indeed, other prominent teachers of the day also took exception to Funakoshi's classification. In 1930, Chojun Miyagi was quoted as saying that the breakdown of Shorin-ryu and Shorei-ryu into kata for differing body types, as Funakoshi did, was unfounded (Miki, et al, 1930). Miyagi also went on to say basically the same thing in his 1934 essay Karatedo Gaisetsu (McCarthy, 1999). At the 1936 "meeting of the masters," he said that the only real difference between Shorin-ryu and Shorei-ryu lay in their teaching methods (ibid.).

    Later, Mabuni Kenwa and his co-author Nakasone Genwa, in their 1938 publication "Kobo Kenpo Karatedo Nyumon," also disagreed with Funakoshi's categorizations.

    The main thrust of the Mabuni/Nakasone argument is that if this is indeed a valid classification system, then why did Funakoshi change the classifications of certain kata, namely Wanshu (Shorei-ryu to Shorin-ryu), Chinto (Shorei-ryu to Shorin-ryu) and Jitte (Shorei-ryu to Shorin-ryu, than back to Shorei-ryu)?

    They also argue that following Funakoshi's classification method, Chojun Miyagi's (founder of Goju karate) brainchild Tensho would clearly belong to the Shorei-ryu. However, as Mabuni (founder of Shito-Ryu karate) and Nakasone (a famous Tomari/Matsumura karate-ka) state, Tensho was based on the chapter entitled Rokkishu (showing six open hand positions with some description of their application) in the Bubishi (a once secret text on White Crane and Monk Fist kung fu hand copied and passed among many early Oknawan karate masters), and it is clearly stated within that Rokkishu belongs to the Shorin(ji)ryu (Mabuni et al,
    1938).

    and you might read http://www.ucd.ie/karate/documents/whatisshotokan.pdf
    Last edited by patfromlogan; 1/22/2010 8:20pm at .
    "Preparing mentally, the most important thing is, if you aren't doing it for the love of it, then don't do it." - Benny Urquidez
  4. No Name is offline

    Featherweight

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    Posted On:
    1/22/2010 8:23pm

    Bullshido Newbie
     Style: Tae Kwon Do and Hapkido

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Quote Originally Posted by Petter View Post
    What are you looking for? Neither of them says anything whatsoever about contact sparring; I would question whether either school focuses much on imparting real fighting skills. If you want karate, and if you want to fight, you might want to look for Kyokushin, Ashihara, or Enshin (or Daiko Yuko/Kudo, if you’d like to add throws). And I rather cringe at the top graphic on the JKA site, showing one guy aggressively blocking a round kick with his forearm (sounds like a very good way to break your arm); if that’s what they think looks good in advertising…

    If, on the other hand, you don’t care so much about practical fighting skills, you’re probably asking your question on the wrong forum.

    On a different note, one of the instructors affiliated with that JKA dojo is a forum admin over at the Karate Underground, a karate forum where most people are not much given to mysticism and nonsense, and most people agree that hitting bags and contact sparring are better than hitting air and working kata if you want to learn to fight. You might be able to ask him questions directly there.

    You might also want to try just going to the clubs and watching or trying a practice. Every martial arts school and club I’ve heard of lets people try at least one class before committing.
    There are Kyokushin and enshin schools in San Francisco and San jose, but i'm not willing to commute over 20 miles to train. There appears to be a real lack of karate where I live.
  5. Petter is offline

    12th level logic wielder

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    Posted On:
    1/22/2010 8:26pm


     Style: BJJ, judo, rapier

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Quote Originally Posted by No Name View Post
    There are Kyokushin and enshin schools in San Francisco and San jose, but i'm not willing to commute over 20 miles to train. There appears to be a real lack of karate where I live.
    Keep in mind that there are a lot of perfectly respectable, non-karate striking styles. Kickboxing, Muay Thai, sanda/sanshou oriented kung fu schools…Western boxing, if you’re willing to sacrifice the kicks to get quality punching in…presumably many other styles, which more striking-savvy members can say more about.
    [ petterhaggholm.net | blog | essays ]
    [ self defence: general thoughts | bjj: “don’t go to the ground”? ]
    “The plural of anecdote is anecdotes, not data.”
  6. Conde Koma is offline
    Conde Koma's Avatar

    Thumbs up!

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    Posted On:
    1/22/2010 8:48pm

    supporting member
     Style: Judo,MT,Boxing,BJJ

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Where are you at, and do you go to school? Colleges can have decent programs with emphasis on sparring/competition, Cal has good boxing, TKD, and judo programs.
  7. No Name is offline

    Featherweight

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    Posted On:
    1/22/2010 9:17pm

    Bullshido Newbie
     Style: Tae Kwon Do and Hapkido

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    I’m Located in Redwood city CA and I'm not in school. I know there are a couple of boxing and kick boxing gyms in the area. There is also a ton of bjj available. I had studied Muay Thai in the past and I really liked the straightforward training methods. I also like the philosophy and the environment of traditional martial arts. I guess you can't have it all.
  8. jakeypoo54 is offline

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    Posted On:
    1/23/2010 12:18am

    Bullshido Newbie
     Style: shotokan, BJJ, Judo

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    I would definitely go for the Shotokan school. JKA Shotokan is the style of karate. it has evolved so much from Okinawan karate (like shorin ryu), and you will know some of the Katas from tkd. But, your going to hit a learning curve with the body dynamics. Thank you Japanese universities.
  9. Petter is offline

    12th level logic wielder

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    Posted On:
    1/23/2010 12:32am


     Style: BJJ, judo, rapier

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Quote Originally Posted by jakeypoo54 View Post
    I would definitely go for the Shotokan school. JKA Shotokan is the style of karate. it has evolved so much from Okinawan karate (like shorin ryu)
    Evolution, both in the biological sense and in sports, is adaptation to a particular environment. Something evolving doesn’t mean that it gets “better” in some general, global sense; it means it’s getting better at doing whatever it takes to do well in it. In the case of the JKA (as well as SKA/CSK, which I used to be a member of), that environment has been one of point-sparring and little to no pressure testing. (There are exceptions; there are certainly shotokan schools that train hard. But I do believe they are a fairly small minority.)

    You are better off looking at martial arts styles that have evolved in an environment where it is necessary to remain adapted to actual fighting conditions—in other words, styles featuring hard sparring and competition.

    Obviously, it’s a matter of fitness for a purpose, so unless fighting skills is your goal, this is irrelevant—but then, Bullshido is not the best place to come.
    [ petterhaggholm.net | blog | essays ]
    [ self defence: general thoughts | bjj: “don’t go to the ground”? ]
    “The plural of anecdote is anecdotes, not data.”
  10. maofas is offline
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    Posted On:
    1/23/2010 2:32am

    Join us... or die
     Style: Kenkojuku Karate, Judo

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    If you look on the JKA dojo's schedule they have a class specifically set aside for kumite/sparring. I'd say go observe that. It might suck, but they may surprise you. There are Shotokan dojos that do not focus on pointsparring.

    While the picture of the forearm block on the kick makes me cringe, it's interesting they mention on the site they don't focus on mindless repetition of basics. Frankly, I think endless repetition of basics is great in theory, but what that usually translates to in Karate-speak is marching up and down in front stance, punching from your hip, etc. etc. If they're saying they don't do that, that's a positive sign.

    If the sparring doesn't impress and you want something with a bit of a traditional aura to it that's effective look for Judo.

    -----

    Shotokan's evolution from it's Okinawan roots is largely a product of Funakoshi's students (including his son Yoshitaka). Kendo played an early and very significant influence on Shotokan's evolution away from it's Okinawan roots, and while this might have contributed to some of the things people dislike about the style, overall I feel this introduced many of the style's best points too. While Shotokan has de-evolved since this time, the era when the elder Funakoshi's students & son took over and made drastic changes to the art was a time of intense positive development.

    P.S. From what I've seen, Okinawan styles in the U.S. are less likely than Japanese Karate to have regular sparring of any type, while Japanese -do styles tend to be sport-focused, so SOME form of sparring, even if it's bad, is almost always included. You might luck into an Okinawan dojo that does bogu kumite (not fucking likely!) or spars under KK rules, but from my experience as an observer it's more common for to focus on applications of kata movements, which usually winds up drifting into eye gouge territory. When they do spar, it's most often pointsparring which, while not good practice for anyone, makes far less sense for a style like Goju which is supposed to be close-range.
    Last edited by maofas; 1/23/2010 2:36am at .
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